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Unlocking Student Motivation

Presentation for Lone Star College-CyFair Faculty

Sunnye Pruden

on 7 October 2015

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Transcript of Unlocking Student Motivation

Process that initiates, guides and maintains goal-directed behavior
6 C's to Encourage Motivation
how students explain successes, mistakes, failures: Did it happen because of internal or external factors?
curiosity arousing
immediate use in solving current problem
contribute to long range plans
valued by social group
challenging to learner's skills
Unlocking Student Motivation
How do you motivate students?
Teachers can affect student motivation to learn in two ways:
But first, what motivates?
Pink's Theory
Type of Goal
Factors contributing to student motivation to learn
Objectives: By the end of this presentation you should be able to
Identify 4 key factors that drive student motivation to learn
Apply strategies to facilitate student motivation to learn
Types of Goals
Achievement goal orientation theory: the type of goal toward which a person is working has great impact on how they pursue that goal
Performance Oriented
desire to appear competent, regardless of learning achieved
avoids risk, sticks with familiar
mistakes mean incompetence and should be avoided
improvement not a focus
perform only as much as absolutely have to
little effort as possible
know exactly how many points required to pass
Mastery Oriented
want to learn for the sake of learning
willing to take on difficult tasks
views mistakes as learning opportunities
uses feedback to improve learning
Svinicki, M. (2005). IDEA PAPER #41 Student Goal Orientation, Motivation, and Learning. In The IDEA Center. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from
performance approach
performance avoidant
will work hard to surpass their peers
do what it takes to appear
trying to avoid mistakes and appearing incompetent
reluctant to show work until its perfect
Students' self-judgment of their ability to perform a task
Mastery Experience
experience with past success or failure
Vicarious Experience
observing experiences of others
Verbal Persuasion
verbal feedback to convince or encourage
Physiological state
anxiety, nervousness, rapid heart rate, sweating; these symptoms often occur when learners face challenges that require competence to overcome
Wang, S. (2001). Motivation: General overview of theories. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from
Internal Factors (in my control)
I studied hard
I am smart
I am talented
I am stupid
I never succeed

External Factors (out of my control)
Test was unfair
Teacher hates me
Class is an easy "A"
I was sick during the test
Teacher can't teach
Fundamental attribution error
: tendency to over-emphasive internal factors when attributing cause to others
Self-serving bias
: the tendency to personally attribute positive outcomes to internal factors and negative outcomes to external factor
Our goal is to encourage mastery orientation

“I think that is really neat—I haven’t seen anything quite the same.”
“This next topic is something that we’ll use again and again. It contains valuable ideas that we’ll use throughout the later sections of the course.”
“As you work through the next section, I think that you’ll be pleasantly surprised how relevant it is.”
“As you read through, ask yourself what this section of work is hinting at as the next logical step.”
“We’ve used X in a lot of different ways. If you thought you’d seen them all, just wait for the next assignment.”
“Who’s up for a challenge? I think that you’ll find the next piece of work very interesting.”
“When you try this, you’ll find out whether you really understood yesterday’s lesson.”
“A lot of you have asked me about X. Well, finally we’re going to find out why that’s so.”
Verbal Cues to Point Out Value
Be free with praise and constructive in criticism
. Negative comments should pertain to particular performances, not the performer. Offer nonjudgmental feedback on students’ work, stress opportunities to improve, look for ways to stimulate advancement, and avoid dividing students into sheep and goats.
Place appropriate emphasis on testing and grading.
Tests should be a means of showing what students have mastered, not what they have not. Avoid grading on the curve and give everyone the opportunity to achieve the highest standard and grades.
Set realistic performance goals
and help students achieve them by encouraging them to set their own reasonable goals. Design assignments that are appropriately challenging in view of the experience and aptitude of the class.
Choice:If students are allowed to select a tasks that they personally enjoy doing, their motivation to learn increases.

Challenge:Providing or operating tasks just beyond the skill level of the students is a good approach to challenge learners

Control:To share the classroom control with students means involving them in the process of decision-making , organization of content , and choosing team members

Constructing meaning: If students perceive the value of knowledge, their motivation to learn increases

Collaboration: Works best when students depend on each other to reach a desired goal, when there are rewards for group performance, and when students know how to work together effectively

Consequences:People enjoy having their work and learning achievement appreciated and recognized by others
Wang, S. & Han, S. (2001). Six C's of Motivation. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning,teaching, and technology. Retrieved <insert date>, from
Cerbin, B. (2011). Motivating Student Learning [PowerPoint slides]. Retrieved from

Cerbin, B. (2012). Motivating College Student Learning. In Student Learning. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from

Huitt, W. (2011). Motivation to learn: An overview. Educational Psychology Interactive. Valdosta, GA: Valdosta State University. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from

Motivating Students (2013). In Teaching Effectiveness Program, University of Oregon. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from

RSA. (2010,April 1). RSA Animate - Drive: The surprising truth about what motivates us. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from

Strategies for Increasing Student Motivation (n.d.). In Center for Research on Teaching and Learning at U-M. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from

Svinicki, M. (2005). IDEA PAPER #41 Student Goal Orientation, Motivation, and Learning. In The IDEA Center. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from

Wang, S. & Han, S. (2001). Six C's of Motivation. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning,teaching, and technology. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from

Wang, S. (2001). Motivation: General overview of theories. In M. Orey (Ed.), Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology. Retrieved March 26, 2014, from
Other References
Bookmarked sites relative to student motivation:

thank you
Strategies to Increase Value
Set the stage:
start with attention grabber
Give choices:
give students chance to offer alternatives
Provide Challenge: challenged but not frustrated
Use Pretest/Preassessment
Provide real life applications:
simulations, case studies, role play
Invite Guest Speakers:
experts in the field
Provide immediate feedback:
immediate feedback enhances psychological impact of an activity
Make it a game:
test-yourself; competitive teams; outcome focused
Assume students are eager to learn:
self-fulfilling prophecy
Enthusiasm is contagious
Strategies to Increase the Intrinsic Value of Tasks in Your Class (n.d.). In Neag Center of Gifted Education and Talent Development at University of Connecticut. Retrieved April 8, 2014 from

When students attribute poor performance to low ability, they are more likely to give up.

When students attribute poor performance to lack of preparation, more likely to keep trying
Attribution Training: change the way students think about their own success and failure
Cerbin, B. (n.d.). Brief Interventions That Improve Achievement. In Exploring How Students Learn. Retrieved April 8, 2014 from
Full transcript